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on June 27, 2009
Wes Craven's The Last House on the Left was released in 1972 and I heard from many people who were old enough to see it when it first came out (like my dad) that it was the most shocking thing anyone had ever seen. To this day the original is still a raw and often disgusting piece of cinema, so being that in 2009 films can push the envelope even more, I didn't know how far this thing would go.

It's shocking, brutal and gross, but it didn't just go the buckets of blood route. Yes, there is some gore, but compared to films like Hostel and SAW this is quite tame. What does get under your skin is the rape scene. I read that some people witnessed others leave the theater at this point and they never came back. I guess they didn't see the original or read up on what they paid to see before plopping in their seat. It shows little skin compared to the 1972 version, but it's a long scene that is painful to watch.

The cast is quite good, though most are actors whose names you won't know. The father, played by Tony Goldwyn, and the leader of the killers, played by Garrett Dillahunt were the standouts.

For a film as gritty as this one, the cinematography is polished and takes away a little bit of the raw power that the original had. I actually don't think Wes Craven's 1972 flick holds up well today and thought this remake was better.

Make sure you are in the right frame of mind before seeing this one. By that I mean, don't watch The Last House on the Left and expect to be in a good mood when you leave. While it's a pleasure to see the parents take out the villains one by one to avenge their daughter, you will leave the theater looking for the bright sun to make you feel clean again. Too bad it was raining when I got out. Don't worry, I think I'll be okay.
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This is a remake of the Wes Craven's low budget 1972 cult favorite of the same name. I saw the original, and despite its low budget values, replete with grainy film images and bad acting, it was one of the most horrifying and brutal films that I had ever seen. Of course, the reality is that the crimes that were perpetrated in that film were just that, and, consequently, it remains one of the most frightening and shocking films to date. It was truly chilling. When I saw that there had been a remake, I would curious to see how it would compare. I would have to say that in the shock and awe department, the original still holds sway. Still, the remake is an excellent film and, though brutal, somehow less frightening.

The storyline is every parent's worse nightmare. A teenager, Mari Collingwood, goes with her parents to their rural country house. She takes the family car to meet a friend in town. Unbeknownst to them, an escaped killer named Krug is on the loose with his rescuers. Mari and her friend hook up with a creepy but cute guy with whom they end up smoking weed with in his motel room. Then his father, his crazy girl-friend, and his uncle show up, and all hell breaks loose. They are none other than the escaped killer and his rescuers. Clearly, they are not going to let these two girls walk away. What happens next will chill the viewer.

This gritty and raw film has excellent production values, good cinematography, and the cast is a definite an improvement over that in the original. The controversial rape scene is brutal but probably mirrors the reality of such a crime, and the reality of it ain't pretty. Garret Dillahunt is definitely a standout as the ruthless escaped killer. Likewise Tony Goldwyn, Monica Potter, and Sarah Paxton are also excellent as the beleaguered Collingwood family. Overall, it is a remake that stands up well to the original, as well as on its own merits. Although the film is very similar to the original, there are some differences, though in the long run, these differences do not really make or break this film of a family fighting to survive under circumstances most of us would prefer not to think about. Word to the wise: this film is definitely not for the squeamish or faint of heart.
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on June 23, 2009
Watched this picture a few days ago and it is simply facinating in the mood it creates.The original was in all fairness brilliant for it's time but a re make for the new generation was long overdue and boy did they get it right.The rape scene is extremely tough to stomach and the gore factor is certainly not easy on the eyes but the revenge driven parents are a joy to watch for fans of this genre.Very satisfying ending.For the few out there who have not seen the original i would reccommend watching this version and please keep an open mind.To summarize...this picture can be extremely disturbing from time to time but the end result makes the ride worthwhile.Keep a special place in your mind for this style of horror/thriller as it won't leave you easily.Definitely one for the books.
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on August 11, 2009
Having never seen the original, I came into this film with only a vague knowledge of the story. I know the original is considered a classic, and I really like the up and coming actor Garret Dillahunt, so I gave this one a whirl. While not directed by Wes ( which to me is a detraction) it is produced by him...and the influence a little evident in the film. This film is a rape revenge film, not to dissimilar to all of the exploitation flicks of the 70s with the same subject matter, big difference being the budget. The film is being marketed as a Horror..but is not a horror in the modern sense of the idea of "horror flick", it is only a horror as the content is brutal, and many times horrifying...I bet if Terror where a film category this film would more comfortably fit in it. There are several scenes in this film that are not for the faint of heart, and while other reviewers have panned it as being to graphic...it is not as graphic as other cult classic rape/revenge flicks such as "I spit on your grave", or the more modern torture flick "The Girl Next Door" in fact there is very little nudity save for the obligatory boob shots. That is not to say that this movie doesn't have some very disturbing scenes, and may not be suitable for everyone...cuz it does, and it ain't. Over all the actors carried the day with this one, great acting all around...and an interesting..and somewhat different approach to ideas on social degeneration. Not gunna change the world..but also ..not the end of it..if you like gore ..or horror/thrillers..check it out.
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on January 20, 2016
This movie is not another stupid B movie that wants to please male fantasy.
It has no graphic nudity or rape nudity scene.
It is a really well made thriller.
I've seen some really bad movies in this category like <I spit on your grave (Remake) . Now that one was so stupid.
Compare to that one, I was so deeply fall into this movie that I couldn't think of other things for the last 30-40 minutes.
When the guys come to the girl's house that they raped not knowing that that is the girl's house, because they were brutally injured by a car accidant, and the girl's parents found out that they are the guys who raped their girl, from that on, the movie becomes really a top notch thriller. And the parents' revenge part is not a bit cliche. It is so natural and intense. They had to deal with the killer from not knowing that their raped daughter is back at home totally exhausted and also on the other hand, they had to revenge them.
I haven't seen anything this well done movie for some time.
The parents and bad guys were really good actors although they are not popular actors. The only thing I can complain is the daughter. She has no charm at all. But it was ok since her roll was so small.
The background music also really helped the intensity well.
I briefly saw the original movie by Wes Craven and I can see that the rape scene involves intense full body nudity and all. It was for male fantasy and I didn't liked it at all. Making movie is for audience anyway. That one (The original Last house on the left) was more like B movie. Hungry for new audience.
But this movie is a bit different. This one is a really well made thriller.
You better watch this. There is so much to learn from it.
PS: I don't know about the UNRATED VERSION why it had to be unrated. There in nothing seriously disturbing image at all. Adding a few footages doesn't always mean they should be UNRATED.
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on December 20, 2013
Not a huge fan of scary movies, but I heard from so many sources how disturbing this one was so naturally, I had to judge for myself. It was a very good movie. Definitely captured and help my attention, but I didn't find it THAT bad. I've seen much scarier movies. Maybe because I had such high expectations it fell short, but I would still recommend this movie. I think how disturbing it is will depend on what you find scary. If it is the depravity of our fellow human beings that scares you, then you will be moved, however if it's ghosts and that kind of thing, then not so much.
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on April 19, 2016
My fiance and I have been jonesing for a good scary movie to watch and this appeared on not one, but a few 'top scary movie' lists. Why...I have no freaking idea. This movie was so bad that we stopped watching it around 45 mins or so in. I don't want to spoil it for anyone, so I'll just stop there. In saying that, we're still on our quest...
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on August 24, 2012
I have both the original movie and this version if about the same level only with a few plot twists, mainly the ending they tacked on. Both movies offer a cold blooded feeling when the convict attacks the girls with his gang of fiends in the woods, it really did give me a sickened feeling. This is an exploitation revenge flick just like the original, it's compelling in a cheap shock value way. I gave it an extra star 4, instead of 3 because it's a very vivid HD transfer.
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on May 3, 2014
I LIKE last house on the left almost as much as much as when I
first saw it way back when I was I in junior high school
when my older brother and his friend took me to see
the only difference between the theatrical version and the version released on DVD there are a few critical
scenes missing
like the one where the lady bites off you know what and then the camera follows it wile it flies
across the screen sure I admit not much to do with the overall plot of the story
but a great ending and cool final coupe de gra for MR PERV himself that's the last time he' gone to have any fun
at the expense of some naïve young girl MAYBE that's the point of the final scene
TOO BAD THAT POINT IS LEFT OUT in wes cravens finest bit of celluloid
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on January 3, 2010
Spoilers abound, so please stop reading if you haven't seen this remake or the original. I bought this DVD for $2.99 at a Blockbuster that was closing, and made a point of watching the original immediately afterward, since I hadn't seen it in about 5 years.

This is a remake to one of the most notorious horror films of the `70s. Notorious because of the various prints that floated around (some showed more than others), notorious because of the sexual degradation and violence in an R rated movie (originally meant to be an adult film, they decided to go with an R rating to make more money on the drive-in circuit). And notorious for its frequent tonal shifts - black comedy/sadistic violence/slapstick comedy/sexual humiliation.

This remake takes the safe route, and all but sanitizes the sexual humiliation scenes and the brutality of the murders. Yes, what remains will shock to a degree, but not to the degree of the original.

Here are some changes (mostly politically correct crap that has overtaken contemporary horror films):

'72: Krug's son lures the girls to the lair so Krug and company can "have some fun", and in perhaps the most disturbing scene in the film, Krug's son briefly retaliates by pointing the gun at him, but Krug has so much control over him (by hooking him on heroin), he tells him to kill himself, and he obliges.

'09: Krug's son is a stereotypic pothead/victim who innocently invites the girls back to smoke, thinking Krug won't come back until later, and actively helps out the family towards the end.

'72: the girls are typical teenagers of the time who smoke.

'09: Mari's friend smokes, Mari evidently does not (coughing when she takes a hit), and this relegates the film to the current morality tale of pot smoking=death; see "Chainsaw" `03 when Biel expresses disgust over their trip to get pot, then flicks a joint out of the window when offered one, and "Friday the 13th" `09 that has pothead dolts getting killed by Jason.

'72: Mari is shot, manages to crawl out of the lake, and is found dead. Realistic and devastating.

'09: Mari is shot, and manages to swim, then crawl out of the lake and to the house in a rainstorm that is described as so bad, even a tow truck won't come out - politically correct nonsense to the extreme. And I'm sorry, but foreshadowing this by showing her holding her breath under water at the beginning doesn't cut it.

`72: The killers are depicted as "animal-like" (Sadie), killers of a priest and two nuns (Krug), and sadistic child molestors (Weasel).

'09: Sadie has a mascara tear fall from her eye when Mari is shot, and Weasel is neutered by being renamed "Francis" and cries like a baby when his broken nose is fixed. Contrast his crybaby behavior with Mari's stoic silence when her father stabs her in the back twice to treat her. And Krug is just another typical killer/rapist that could have been in any crime-themed TV show or movie.

'72: The family is sympathetic in their revenge for their dead daughter.

`09: The family is initially sympathetic in their revenge for their *still living* daughter, but sympathy turns to incredulity during the final scene that shows the father becoming Dr. Butcher M.D. when he kills Krug in a set piece taken directly from an obscure slasher film called "Evil Laugh". This scene could have worked if it was a nightmare scene (like the chisel nightmare from "Last House" '72) but it does not work in the context of a real scenario, but instead lowers it to the level of a stupid `80s slasher film, like one called "Evil Laugh".

A technically well-made/well-acted film, but not a good remake.
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